Effective is Your Capture Strategy?
the war for talent, you may be adding fuel to the fire.
Bill Radin, President, Radin Associates
You lost a perfectly good candidate to another company.
could it happen? Your company has innovative products, a slew of happy
customers and a fun, casual work environment.
But no capture strategy.
other words, you know how to wine and dine the talent you need, but
for some reason you fail to---um---consummate the deal.
course, youre not alone. Managers at all levels complain of their
difficulty in attracting the best people, while their competitors seem
to gobble up talent like Twinkies. But why the disparity?
Price of Indecision
First, take a realistic look at how your company addresses the needs
of todays candidates. Do you offer the types of resources, training
programs and mentoring that will attract career-minded individuals? If
not, you may be at a disadvantage in the current market.
see if you suffer from comparison shopping paralysis by taking
this little test. Do more than half the people you interview:
Accept another job before you can make an offer?
Make salary demands that creep up from one interview to the next?
Require more than a day or two to contemplate your offer?
Have a change of heart after accepting your offer?
the answer is yes to one or more of these questions, you may be losing
good candidates due to delays or indecision. To rectify this, shorten
your hiring cycle, either by scheduling multiple interviews on one
day, or by making your selection more quickly. The longer you take to
make hiring decisions, the more time you give candidates to check out
Change in Perception
If hiring managers
would simply look at job seekers as their customers, most of
them would dramatically improve their capture rate. Thats because
its infinitely more effective to close the engineer (or sales
rep or marketing manager) sitting across your desk than it is to snare
someone youve never met, assuming the person fits your needs.
than strike while the iron is hot, too many managers leave worthwhile
candidates out in the cold. The appearance of indifference often
leaves the candidate with bitter feelings and a sense of
frustration---hardly the building blocks of a good reputation within
the talent community.
Eyes Say Yes, but Your Lips Say No
To help reduce the
number missed opportunities, take a look at the five most common
mistakes managers make during the hiring cycle---and how to avoid
Your offer comes too late. If youve got a hot candidate,
move quickly! Nothing turns off a job-seeker more than an interminable
Your offer is too low. Research the market---as it is today,
not what it was last year---and try to stay calm when the candidate
states his salary needs. What seems like extortion may actually be the
negotiating comes at the eleventh hour. If a salary compromise is
necessary, try to reach an agreement before you make a formal offer.
Negotiating after the candidate turns your offer down might be
perceived as poor planning on your part; or worse, an exercise in bad
faith. As soon as you know the offer will be accepted, go ahead and
story keeps changing. Whatever else you do, always maintain a
consistent job description from one interview (or interviewer) to the
next. If you and another manager cant agree on the nature of the
job (or you surprise the candidate with new revelations), you stand a
good chance of driving talent from your door.
Your body language spooks the candidate. Job-seekers
have a sixth sense regarding your sincerity, urgency and level of
interest. Mixed signals or indecision during the interview will almost
certainly be mirrored by the candidate, who will find a
way---consciously or not---to undermine your offer.
never too late to make adjustments. If too many people turn you down
(or you cant find anyone to interview), you may need to rethink
your expectations, salary or job description.
Ends Sink Ships
Finally, make sure all
loose ends are buttoned up prior to extending an offer. A friend of
mine recently accepted a management position with an e-commerce
startup before all the details of his compensation package were
worked out. Unfortunately, thats where the devils were (in the
details), and when the two sides couldnt reach an agreement, my
friend walked away.
sloppy or ill-conceived capture strategy only gives comfort---and
leverage---to your competition. While youre sweating the small
stuff (like whether to calculate the vesting period on a monthly or
quarterly basis), your competitors offer of a job may already have
Bill Radin, President,
Radin Associates firstname.lastname@example.org (800)